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It Looks Like Someone Left a Gun on Mars

There’s a gun on Mars! OK, calm down. It just looks like there’s A GUN ON MARS! Does this mean The Martian Chronicles were really true stories? Could someone actually fire a gun on Mars?

It sure looks like a gun, doesn't it?

It sure looks like a gun, doesn’t it?

Those sharp-eyed folks who scour the photos taken by the Mars rovers and satellites have found a sharp-shooting anomaly this time. The photo was taken by the Mars Opportunity Rover in September 7, 2014, (SOL 3776) and looks like a handgun dropped and abandoned on the Martian surface. (Some reports list the date as SOL 3773 but the NASA photos are labeled SOL 3776) On that date, Opportunity was on a path between Mt.. Edgecumbe and Wdowiak Ridge. It also took pictures of its own tracks and of something that looks like a trailer hitch or joystick.

Trailer hitch? Joystick?

Trailer hitch? Joystick?

Questions, questions, questions. What kind of gun is it? I’ll leave its identification to those more knowledgeable in handguns. What’s it doing there on Mars? Russian cosmonauts often carried guns on spaceflights but they’ve never been to Mars … or have they?

Fans of Ray Bradbury’s The Martian Chronicles will recall that the husband of Martian woman Ylla (Ylla) had a gun for hunting which he used to kill two astronauts, and the archaeologist Spender carried a gun and used it to kill his crew-mates (The Settlers). That narrows the ownership of the possible gun found by Opportunity down to Martians and Earthlings.

If it’s really a gun, could it be fired on Mars? Experts say yes (don’t you think the Russians thought of this?). The gunpowder and explosive primer inside the bullet need no external oxygen to explode – just something to strike it. The lack of atmosphere would help the bullet travel much farther on Mars than on Earth and its force would not dissipate as fast. On the other hand, the frigid temperatures on Mars could reduce the power of the gunpowder and the dusty surface could cause mechanical problems – Russia’s AK47 might be a better choice there than a handgun.

Did the gun owner drop the gun and use this cannon instead?

Did the gun owner ditch the gun and use this cannon instead?

As with many of these types of photographs from Mars (like the cannon), there’s no indication of its size and it could just be a rock.

A rock shaped like a gun that a Martin could use to pistol-whip an astronaut!

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    ” Watch out guv he’s got a shooter!” Lol. 😉


    That joystick thing is manufactured!!

  • mph23

    ‘Merica! All the proof I need the the 2nd amendment is infallible and universal. Now, I’m going to keep stockpiling ammo and being afraid with renewed self-righteousness and vigor.

  • brokenbutcher

    apophenia.. again

  • truthmonger

    Eternal vigilance is the price of freedom. You don’t need that much ammo or weapons, btw. A good deer rifle with scope is as deadly as anything. That and good sidearm are really all you need..and maybe a shotgun for hunting. Remember, its the *threat* of deadly force that keeps both criminals and tyrants at bay.

  • Bill O’Neil

    Some scale would be nice, but I’m having a hard time seeing that as a rock.

  • Reflect

    If real it would tie in with UFO sightings. maybe Mars is one of their bases.

  • Don Lum

    Check this out for all those curious ones…

  • Tom Buyea — Fla.News service

    It must be part of the Rover !! ? If the Rover discovered this ? This is proof of former life on Mars and not long ago !

  • Tom Buyea — Fla.News service

    I think it is a rock. Not a gun !

  • Tom Buyea — Fla.News service

    The joystick must be part of the rover ? If not it is proof of recent life on Mars !!

  • Duane Powell

    The story should have been about the joystick, don’t you think? It’s NOT a rock.

  • William Burke

    It’s part of the Rover.

  • William Burke

    It’s impossible to ID from that photo. It seems to be a PARODY of a semiauto pistol – the slide stop/release is ABSURDLY oversized. No real gun would have a slide stop/release lever of that size.

  • jared

    The ‘joystick’ looks like a model of the inner solar system, with the contrast adjusted one can make out the orbital paths of mercury venus earth and mars. Mars’ orbit is correctly more elliptical. Wish someone could tell if it’s part of the rover or not

  • RichG

    maybe the martians were not as dexterous as us humans

  • Larry Burks

    Sundial, and yes, it’s part of the rover.